The Salsa Timberjack received a major overhaul in 2021, including a longer top tube and wheelbase, lower bottom bracket, slacker head tube angle, more downtube mounts, and new top tube mounts for bolt-on bags. It’s the most capable hardtail mountain bike in Salsa’s lineup, built up around a lightweight aluminum frame, 29″ or 27.5″ wheels, and a 130-150mm travel fork. Both Neil and I tested the latest version and agree that it’s one of the best hardtail mountain bikes we’ve ridden for the price, which earned it a spot in both the 2020 and 2021 Gear of the Year Awards.
While nothing major has changed for 2023, the Timberjack remains one of the most value-packed hardtail mountain bikes for bikepacking, trail riding, and general good times. It’s a well-rounded option for anyone looking for a versatile do-everything rig and can be pushed quite hard while trail riding if that’s what you’re into. Find a quick breakdown of the 2023 Salsa Timberjack lineup below.
2023 Salsa Timberjack XT Z2 29
The top-end XT Z2 29er build is built up around a Marzocchi Z2 130mm travel fork, a Shimano XT/SLX drivetrain and brakes, and an adjustable TranzX dropper post. It rolls on Maxxis Minion/Maxxis Rekon 29 x 2.6″ tires, WTB ST i30 rims, and Shimano MT400 series hubs. It has an MSRP of $2,899 USD and can be found here.
Timberjack XT Z2 27.5
If 29″ wheels aren’t your thing or you’re after better floatation and wider rubber, the XT Z2 build is also available in a 27.5″ build with wider rims, 27.5 x 2.8″ tires, and an otherwise identical build kit to the previous model. It has the same MSRP of $2,899 USD and can be found here.
Timberjack XT 29
For $400 less, you can get the XT 29er build, which features many of the same components as the top-end builds but is built around a RockShox 35 Gold RL fork instead of the higher-end Marzocchi. It has an MSRP of $2,549 USD and can be found here.
Timberjack XT 27.5
Once again, for shorter riders who might prefer 27.5+ or 29″ tires or anyone riding in soft terrain like sand and snow, the XT Timberjack is offered in a 27.5 x 2.8″ build for the same price as the 29er build. It comes specced with a RockShox 35 Gold RL 130mm travel fork, Shimano SLX/XT drivetrain, four-piston Shimano hydraulic brakes, and Maxxis Minion/Rekon tires. It comes in a flashy copper colour way and has an MSRP of $2,549 USD. Learn more here.
Timberjack SLX 29
The base-level Timberjack SLX comes in at $2,249 USD and still packs in a lot of value for the price. The Army Green frame is built up around a RockShox 35 Silver TK fork, Shimano Deore/SLX drivetrain, Shimano MT401 brakes, Race Face touchpoints, and the same Maxxis Minion/Rekon tire combo as the other builds. Check it out here.
Timberjack SLX 27.5
It looks like Mint Green is still in for 2023, and the Timberjack SLX 27.5 is covered in it. It has the same MSRP as the 29er version, and all of the same components, but comes with 27.5 x 2.8″ tires for more grip and floatation. It also shares the same MSRP of $2,249 USD, learn more here.
Salsa continues to offer the Timberjack as a frame only for $749 for those looking to build up a completely custom rig. For those who prefer the feel of space metal, you can grab a titanium Timberjack frame for $3,249, although it sports slightly outdated/less rowdy geometry compared to the aluminum frames.
You can dig into the entire Timberjack lineup at SalsaCycles.com or ask your local dealer for details. Make sure to check out our reviews, linked below.
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